01st Jun 2012

Mitt Romney: on the campaign trail

Now that Rick Santorum has left the race, Mitt Romney is all but guaranteed the Republican nomination. This must be a relief for the former governor of Massachusetts, because it leaves him free to focus all his energy – and campaign money – on his face-off against Barack Obama for the presidency. Romney will spend the coming months on the road, campaigning against Obama in key battleground states. For both candidates, but particularly for the challenger, the lead-up to the election in November is the most gruelling six months in US politics. 

Throughout the campaign, job creation and the economy are likely to be the two key issues, and Romney’s hoping his pedigree as a successful businessman will convince Americans he’s qualified to solve them. Romney is a wealthy man. He has amassed a personal fortune in excess of $200 million running Bain Capital, a private equity company that handles leveraged buyouts. During his time with Bain Romney applied consulting expertise to the companies it bought or invested in, accelerating performance and increasing share value before selling them off at a profit. Between co-founding the company in 1984 and retiring in 2001 Romney helped turn Bain into one of the most successful private equity firms in the US with $4 billion under its management.

Romney was also described as “the first CEO governor” by the Boston Globe in 2003, and as he campaigns for the presidency he will pitch his gubernatorial experience as evidence of his competence to administer the US economy.

Whatever about the presidency, it’s certainly hard to imagine anyone being better prepared for the rigours of the campaign trail. The Romneys have been here before – Mitt tried and failed to secure the Republican nomination in 2008, and his father George, a former CEO of General Motors and governor of Michigan, also took a run at the Republican nomination back in the 1960s. In the 1970s Romney simultaneously attended Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School through a joint degree program. It seems that every aspect of his privileged background and distinguished career has primed him for the challenges he is about to face.

At First100, we know preparation is one of the most vital and effective tools for dealing with the challenges of leadership. A detailed and comprehensive First 100 Days Plan can mean the difference between a slow start and performance acceleration from day one.

Hilda Goold

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